Fruit Beer Strawberry Alarm Clock v3.0 (Strawberry Blonde)

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Racked to strawberries this past Friday. Quick question. I only wanted to put strawberries on half of the brew. So I racked 2.5 gallons onto strawberries and bottled the other 2.5. Think I made a mistake though. I have the 2.5 gallons plus strawberries in a 6.5 gallon bucket. It's been 4 days and I haven't seen any activity in the airlock. Have I completely screwed this up?!?!?

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Haha. Thanks. Guess I'm just having noob anxiety.

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I know this a 5 year old thread( wow). My LHBS only carries wyeast which brings me to my question. Has anybody used wyeast ( other than 1099)? I was thinking of using 1010.

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I'll be kegging this beer in the next couple days. I'll post a picture when the first glass is poured.

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Finished at 5.5% with more strawberry flavor than I expected from the sample when I kegged today.

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I just pulled a sample of my strawberry alarm clock and I can't taste any strawberries yet. It's been about 13 days in the secondary. Did I do something wrong? The strawberries were float in the bag. I had put a pint glass with them to sink but there floating on top. Should I squeeze the bag of strawberries?

Hold up.4 lbs of strawberries in secondary and you still don't taste any? What type did you use? I used 6 in my last batch and it tastes like a strawberry sweet tart....but I am curious about your batch.
4lbs. Like the recipe called for. Got them at trader joes. They were sweet. What should try? It almost tastes like a Corona:(
I honestly don't know. My recipe was different but the 2 lbs less shouldn't have "no" strawberry" taste. Give it another week? I did notice that it took about 4 weeks for the taste to shine through fwiw. But that was post bottling. Need.others to chime in in this one.
I sent a reply to your PM, but I will repost it here in the even that it helps others:

Hmmm, if you followed the recipe, it shouldn't have no strawberry flavor at all. Did you taste any of the strawberries before you added them? It is possible that they were picked too early, or perhaps that the variety you got were bred for long shelf life rather than good flavor (this happens with tomatoes, for example). Pressing the bag shouldn't really make any difference, and I usually avoid it, as you are likely to add pectin and other stuff that can make your beer hazy.

Did you smell any strawberries? One thing that I have noticed sometimes is that occasionally when I drink this beer, I don't taste as much strawberry flavor as normal apart from a bit of tartness, but I can still smell lots of strawberry. Then sometimes I will try another pour from the same batch, and will taste plenty of strawberry. Please keep in mind that the beer will not be "sweet" like an actual strawberry since most or all of the sugar will have fermented out, so it could be you are tasting the flavor but not recognizing it.

EDIT: I will also add that it 1.020 is your finishing gravity, that is VERY high. Mine usually finishes around 1.010.
What??? No, that's not what I said.

I said if you are expecting it to taste exactly like biting into a fresh strawberry, it won't, because strawberries are sweet, and that sugar ferments out when you put them in beer. It will taste like strawberries, but without the sugar. However, it should smell VERY MUCH like strawberries, and you should definitely be able to identify a strawberry flavor, just without the sweetness.
I'm sorry my reply sounds a little mean. I didn't mean for it to sound like that. Do you think squeezing the bag will give it flavor? Should I add more strawberries or just wait.
No, squeezing the bag won't do anything but make your beer cloudy.

You can always add more strawberries if you like, but maybe you could provide some more detail on exactly what you did?

I am also a bit concerned by the pretty high gravity reading you show in the photo you posted. If you added the strawberries at that point, you may very well have lost some of strawberry flavor due to the fact that your beer wasn't fully fermented out before you added them. The CO2 produced during fermentation has a tendency to 'scrub away" aromas and flavors. What is the gravity reading now?
I followed the recipe to the T. But failed to take a reading until day 13 in secondary. I'll take 1 today. I'm not to good at readings. What is 1.020 all about? I've read that it's a curse of sort.
It's not a curse. It's a pretty high FG, though, especially if that is the gravity AFTER adding the strawberries. That means it was probably even higher before you added them. At the very least, your beer will taste sweeter and have a bit more body than is typical for the recipe. It could also potentially indicate fermentation issues, etc. but not always.

To me, it indicates something probably went a bit off script along the way, although that is not necessarily a bad thing. Without more details about exactly what you did, it's hard to guess why it finished that high.

Did you use the extract version or the AG version of the recipe?
Assuming you used the same grain bill, an FG that high indicates you either overshot the mash temp, or you had fermentation issues (e.g. underpitched the yeast, let the temp get too low, etc.).
Some samples of it today. It does have a really really small strawberry taste. But still tastes a little like a Corona. I was wondering since I'm going to keg this. If I could add some more strawberries. I was expecting to keg Wednesday but might wait.


You can add more strawberries if you like. If you are kegging, one thing you might try is adding some strawberries in a (tightly sealed) nylon bag or similar, maybe with some stainless steel ball bearings or glass marbles to weigh it down, and putting that into the keg. Be forewarned though that you have to be pretty careful about clogging up your diptube if you try something like that. Also, since those strawberries will add sugar, you will of course notice that the fermentation will pick up again as well. If you are serving at 35-40 it's going to be pretty slow to ferment, but it will still do so.
Hello people who have actually brewed this before - I've read through this fantastically old thread filled with literally years of trial and error, but found no one post with any attempts on a more "aggressive" partial mash. To clarify, I have a simple 1 gallon mash tun that I used to mash up to about 3 - 3.5 lbs of grain in. I've loved every beer I've made using my partial mash setup and would love to convert the AG recipe to Partial.

I've come up with, what I hope, is a viable substitute for this grain bill, but I have a few concerns.

1) Is the Pale 2-row base malt necessary, given that I have a substantial amount of white wheat in the mix

2) Plugged this in to, and it have me a surprisingly low IBU for 1 oz. of Willamette (11.87) Anyone else feel concerned at this number?

3) From past experience, I tend to have better results fermenting with US-05, rather than 04. Maybe it's just in my head, but I feel like I always get stuck at a FG of 1.020 with 04 (I will need to consult my journal to confirm). So, to be on the safe side, I'd like to use 05.

Recipe below, please shoot as many holes as you'd like!

5.5 gallons

5.5lbs Pale LME

2lbs White Wheat
1 lb Pale 2-Row
.5lb Crystal 10L
.5lb Flaked Wheat
.25lb Cara-Pils

1oz Willamette @ 60mins

1 tsp Irish Moss
4lbs Sliced, frozen strawberries

Safeale US-05

OG 1.058
FG 1.016
ABV: 5.50%
IBU: 11.87
SRM: 5.40
I apologize for the late reply, but I'm stuck with a crazy work schedule recently.

The recipe basically looks OK, although for a 1 gallon mash tun I would be worried about 4.25 lbs total of grain fitting and actually extracting the sugars. One thing you can undoubtedly cut is the cara-pils, which most suppliers actually add a bit already to the LME usually, and the additional protein from the wheat will give it a solid body anyway.

I would also recommend maybe switching all or part of your white wheat to wheat DME (liquid would also work) as that will be easier for you to work with, and I don't feel that using the malt in a partial mash like this is going to make a massive difference in the resulting flavor and mouthfeel. Maybe .5 - 1 lb of malt and make up the difference in extract.

Regarding the IBUs, that is probably due to vessel sizing or a similar issue if I had to guess, although you may also have lower alpha acid content in your recipe than what I had in my hops. One of the benefits of using extract, though, is that you can stagger the extract additions in the recipe, putting maybe half of the extract in at the beginning, and half closer to the end (maybe 15-20 minutes left in the boil). This will lower the effective gravity during the boil which will increase hops utilization, increasing the IBUs. Of course, you can also increase the hops addition. In my recipe I am typically shooting for about 17-18 IBUs, although anything from 15-20 should be fine.

I have made this beer with US-05, and it still tastes great although it doesn't quite have the same fruitiness. The S-04 will finish higher (that is a known characteristic) which is one of the reasons I use a lower mash temp in the recipe. If you are dealing with liquid extract in particular, your recipe is almost guaranteed to finish higher since LME, at least in my experience, tends to have a more dextrinous wort than you can produce using AG and a lower mash temp. One way to handle that is by using DME for all or part of the extract, which tends to ferment out better in my experience. Another option is to sub a small portion of the grain bill with simple sugars, or to add a bit of simple syrup solution after fermentation finishes, which will effectively lower your FG.

With S-04 in particular, another strategy you can use is to (gently) stir it up a few times per day to keep the yeast in suspension a bit longer, as that strain tends to drop out quickly and flocculates extremely well creating a super-tight cake. Once it gets into that cake, it's pretty much done.

Hope this helps. Please feel free to ping me with questions, although my schedule for the next week or so is going to be pretty hectic.
Wow! As always the support from the homebrew community is amazing. Thanks for clarifying that about the 04 - it makes alot of sense and I'm more willing to give it a try again in the future! The hop utilization also makes sense, and I learned somthing new now about that! Let me correct my statement about the mash tun: it's actually the mini cooler with spigot method, probably around 2 gallons, but can hold about 3-4 lbs of grain typically.

I actually have a boat load of pale LME on hand, and really am trying to avoid the purchase of additional extracts, like wheat, until I've just used up what I have on hand. So, below is what I've come up with and am currently brewing!

5.25lbs Pale LME
2.5 lbs white wheat
8 Oz flaked wheat
8 Oz crystal 10L
8 Oz rice hulls

1.25 Oz willamette

Irish moss

Safale 05 (already had on hand)

My mash turned out a bit higher than I aimed for... started at 157 and ended after an hour at 152.

Oh well I'm sure it'll still make great beer in the end!
Sorry to resurrect an old thread, but my wife just had an Abita strawberry lager and loved it. It says they used Strawberry juice. Has anyone tried this? It's slightly sweet as well, so I'm wondering if they filtered to remove the yeast. If that's the case, I may use sorbate and camden then add juice to taste. I keg so this won't be an issue at all.
I brewed this on 6/24/16 and tapped the keg today, 9/5/2016. It tastes really good. I like it. Lots of strawberry flavor with some tartness. Thanks for the recipe!

2.5 Gallon Batch
2.5 lb 2 row
2 lb White Wheat
4 oz Flaked Wheat
4 oz C10L
1.8 oz Cara Foam (used last of inventory)
2.2 oz Cara-Pils (to make up for 4 oz Cara-Pils)

Mashed @ 149 for 70 minutes

14 g Willamette 60 min

S-04 yeast (hydrated)

2 pounds of frozen strawberries in primary for three weeks before kegging. Kegged with 40 grams of corn sugar to carbonate.

OG 1052
FG 1011
ABV - 5.5%
Quick question on this. I have not tried this exact recipe before but the version I made last year (pretty much a basic wheat extract) came in just a tad tart and it occurred to me that it might be worthwhile to try this recipe with two changes:

1. Sweeten with a bit of corn sugar to compensate for any excessive tartness from the berries in secondary.
2. Add some flaked barley to give the beer a creamier mouthfeel.

Any suggestions on how bad of an idea this would be and how much would be safe to add?
Hello all,
and especially to the OP thank you for the recipe!
I brewed this a few weeks ago and now it’s in secondary.
This is an old thread so not sure if anyone will respond but thought it’d be worth a try to ask..
I transferred to secondary with essentially a huge tea bag of strawberry purée that I mashed with a potato masher. Everything seems to be okay as far as sanitization but when I transferred to secondary I didn’t transfer much yeast. Left most of it in the primary and the secondary has been slow but continuous. Went from 1.017 to 1.014 in 10 days. So my question is, any idea if there will be enough yeast to bottle condition when it comes time for it?

thanks in advance for any advice at all.
All the best,